Have you ever been on the receiving end of an apology that felt insincere & fell flat? It might have been someone repeating the words “I’m sorry,” but with an entirely different intention. Fake apologies are unfortunately all too common, especially with narcissists & they can leave the recipient feeling more hurt & confused than before. It’s important to be able to recognize the difference between genuine & fake apologies in order to protect yourself from this manipulative behavior.
A genuine apology is one that conveys a sense of remorse, understanding, & an intention to make things better in the future. It is a sincere attempt to make amends for the hurt that has been caused. The words may be something like, “I’m sorry for what I said & I know it was wrong. I’ll try to do better in the future.” The person apologizing is clearly taking responsibility for their actions, & is expressing a willingness to change their behavior.
A fake apology, on the other hand, is one that is not genuine. It is an attempt to make the other person feel better without the person apologizing actually taking responsibility for the hurt that they caused. Fake apologies often include excuses or phrases such as, “if I hurt you” or “If I said or did something that hurt you,” instead of, “I hurt you” or “I know what I said or did hurt you.” They may also include phrases such as “I’m sorry you feel that way” instead of “I’m sorry I said that.” Fake apologies are simply an attempt to avoid taking responsibility or making changes in their behavior. They can leave the victim feeling even more hurt by the apology than by the behavior the person did in the first place that warranted the apology.
People who give fake apologies are often trying to manipulate the situation in order to get what they want or to avoid any consequences for their actions. Fake apologies are a way for people to re-wind the situation & shift the focus away from their own behavior.
Fake apologies can also be a way for people to alleviate their own guilt. By giving a fake apology, they can appear to be taking responsibility for their actions without actually having to do anything to make things better or change their behavior. It can be a way to appease their conscience without actually having to do any work.
There are some signs to be aware of regarding fake apologies. Fake apologies don’t include a genuine expression of remorse. The person apologizing doesn’t appear to feel any guilt or shame. Also, as mentioned earlier, they often include phrases such as, “I’m sorry if I hurt you” or “I’m sorry you feel that way” rather than, “I’m sorry I hurt you.” They may also include excuses or attempts to shift the blame onto the person who expects the apology as a way to deflect the conversation off the original topic.
Fake apologies also don’t show a genuine desire to do better in the future. The person’s behavior doesn’t change. They may do the same thing again even after their so called apology. Or, if the behavior is mentioned again, they say things like, “I said I was sorry! What else do you want?”, “I won’t keep apologizing for this!” or, “I can’t help it! This is just how I am!”
It can be difficult at first to tell the difference between genuine & fake apologies, but it’s important to be able to recognize the signs so that you can protect yourself from manipulation. Pay attention to the person’s words & behavior after the apology to determine whether or not it’s genuine.
You must be logged in to post a comment.